Grading Fauci

Recently, Anthony Fauci was the subject of a scathing op-ed by something called a Peter Navarro (??). Navarri is known, tragically, to have an extremely bad brain and the White House was forced to claim they had nothing to do with the piece. 

But while much scorn has been directed Navarro’s way, what should we make of Fauci himself? He’s been deified on the left, vilified on the right, and sidelined by the White House. But how should we grade his performance during this pandemic?

Criteria 1: death and destruction
Hooooo boy. Ok, so theoretically, as the nation’s top virologist it’s Fauci’s main job to prevent hundreds of thousands of unnecessary deaths by virus. On that front, the scale of the failure is, um, unignorable. But it’s not going too far out on a limb to say that his guidance hasn’t always been followed, and his advice has generally been to do things like socially distance and wear a mask (we’ll get back to this) that could have prevented the current nightmare we’re sleepwalking through. And considering that the head of the White House Coronavirus task force is the same guy responsible for bringing the HIV/AIDS epidemic back to Indiana, it’s probably fair to say this could have been much worse.
Grade: B-

Criteria 2: scientific adherence
Here’s where Fauci has really shined. In the face of a White House courageously pledging not to let “the science get in the way” of killing teachers, Fauci has been steadfast in forcing the science into the way. It hasn’t always worked out, but Fauci has consistently refused to talk politics or really anything other than the science of the pandemic—and it seems pretty likely that if the president had suggested injecting bleach in his presence, rather than Dr. Birx’s, he would have spoken up,
Grade: A

Criteria 3: protective measures
On the one hand, the CDC committed what epidemiologists refer to as a “catastrophic fuck up” (CFU, in industry-speak) when in March it advised the nation not to wear masks for a virus that turned out to likely be airborne. Fauci doesn’t work at the CDC, but as the nation’s most trusted voice on communicable diseases, he surely played a role in that CFU. On the other hand, Fauci has been adamant about keeping social distance and closing down businesses when needed, even in the face of a president determined to eradicate the state of Florida. 
Grade: B+

Criteria 4: looking sick as fuck
Anthony Fauci is like four feet tall, a billion years old, and would absolutely be able to pipe every intern in the greater Silver Springs area if there weren’t a fucking pandemic. 
Grade: A+, somehow

Criteria 5: keeping his job
As bad as things are, they would surely be worse if Trump’s next choice for the National Institute of Allergies and Infectious Disease—the doctor who prescribed Michael Jackson all that propofol, probably—were in charge. Fauci’s ability to publicly contradict the president and not get fired has been perhaps his greatest strength, and perhaps the only thing keeping us from a situation as dire as that in [add country doing worse at this than the US, make one up if none exists].
Grade: A++

Overall
So how do we grade him on the whole? The pandemic has been a disaster for everyone except grave-diggers, so he’s certainly not getting perfect marks. But an A- feels pretty fair. Maybe that’s just because it’s so jarring to see a government official trying to keep people alive, but if he’s benefiting from low expectations, so be it. Now, go have some freaky socially distant phone sex with a GW grad student, Tony. 
Grade: A-

My Culture Is Not Your Playground: It’s time to stop co-opting introvert culture

As someone who is a hard “I” on the Myers–Briggs, this quarantine season has been very difficult for me. It seems like I can’t go a day without logging on to Instagram and seeing photos of my friends who have traded in their Coachella tickets and networking happy hours for a night in, cuddled up in a cozy blanket to re-read Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban. Hashtags like #introvertlife and #quarantintrovert abound. If I have to hear one more time about how “it’s so nice to finally stay home and have some me time,” I might just pen a thousand-word missive on tumblr. 

I’m sure many of you think it’s funny to joke about how nice it is to finally have an excuse not to hang out with your friends. But maybe next time you should stop and think about how hurtful that can sound to people who have been turning off their camera on video conferences for years. 

We get it. It’s now ~so~ empowering that we can all admit that we find small talk on Zoom to be incredibly cumbersome. Us introverts should take it as a compliment that so many people now claim to “actually wait until the delivery person drops the food off before I come to the door.” But how about you put yourself in our slipper-shod shoes? Next time you brag about how you learned a lot about yourself by quietly self-reflecting during your now-solo coffee break, think about how painful that must be to your introvert friend who—before this quarantine—only found himself represented in cardigan models and Buzzfeed listicles. 

So, while we invite you to celebrate our culture, there are a lot of other ways to appreciate us introverts than to make light of your sudden aversion to hugging friends or seeing your neighbors in the elevator. And we challenge you to think about what it means when this is over and some of you extroverts can put that jigsaw puzzle back on the shelf.

This quarantine can be a fun time if we all take proper social distancing measures and be careful with our personality-shaming. Tell your friends. And can you tell ours too? 

FAQs for the Self-Quarantiner

Q: Should I email my neighbors about the excessive noise they might hear as I jump around because of the fitness app I downloaded? 
A: Oh, you lift?

Q: Why did I buy so many beans?? I don’t eat beans!
A: Eat your fucking beans.

Q: Can I have a little doorknob lick? As a treat? 
A: No!!

Q: Why was Amy Adams’ character in Her? She seemed pretty unnecessary?
A: Your guess is as good as ours. 

Q: Am I no longer practicing social distancing if, while working out, I jump so hard that I open up a hole in the floor, causing me to fall approximately 8 feet into the living room below me and onto my neighbor’s portly 7-year-old as he plays Boggle? 
A: This is a meet-cute.

Q: Can I commit a crime and use social distancing as an excuse to not let the police in? 
A: Only if Anthony Fauci said you could.

Q: Can I complain about my neighbors smoking weed?
A: Fuck off dude, stand by your fellow man. 

Q: How stocked up on pickles is too stocked up on pickles?
A: Too much is never enough.

Q: Exactly how disinfected does an orgy need to be for it to be acceptable? 
A: As long as assholes are bleached, you should be good.

Q: When the fuck will I get to watch Fast 9 in theaters?
A: Not soon enough… not soon enough.

Q: Do I have to have my video on while using Zoom?
A: Only if more than 40% of the participants are also sharing video.

Q: What is Pep Boys doing in response to the COVID-19 outbreak? 
A: Furloughs!

Q: Can someone please take some of these beans!!!
A: No, eat up bean boy.

Q: How many people need to get infected before I can get hella racist about it?
A: Go lick a doorknob, asshole.

Q: How long does it take for Amazon to deliver a 14th-century bird doctor mask?
A: Not as long as it will take for the package to sit in your front hallway while you wait for the virus to fall off it and die. 

Q: Will my gimp mask protect me?
A: Not if you’re using it the right way 😉

Q: Okay, I’ll just be direct here: how much is the Social Security burden going to be lightened?
A: On advice of counsel, we have redacted this answer.

Q: Asking for a friend: Can anyone sneeze in Mitch McConnell’s face, just for fun?
A: Oh hell yeah. Especially if you’re showing symptoms.

Q: I stayed inside today, am I a hero? 
A: Yes, you make healthcare workers look like lazy pieces of shit!